What is DNS and why should you change it? There has always been a debate whether if you should change the DNS for every device you own. Well, first, you will have to know what actually is DNS and why changing it would benefit you.
In simple words, DNS works like a directory on the Internet. When you go to a webpage, send an email or open an app, the very first thing your device would do is to ask the directory: Where can I find this? We call this a DNS request.
Some DNS providers, particularly your ISP (the company that provides you internet service), can see what sites you visits and what you do on the internet even if the content is well encrypted. Most of these DNS providers also sell the data about your activity on the internet to company who needs them, especially advertising companies, to target you with ads.
DNS provided by your ISP is usually much slower when requested, which means it takes longer time to find the webpage you are looking for. By default, you are set to use your ISP’s DNS if you have not changed it.
Google Public DNS and Cloudflare DNS
Among all the public DNS providers, we recommend Google Public DNS or Cloudflare DNS. They are both as good and free to use. You might want to try Cloudflare as they are new to the market and proven faster.
Google DNS, aka the 188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206, has always been the best and most widely used DNS in the world. People use it to better protect their privacy from their ISP, and sometimes to bypass some websites that have been blocked by their default DNS provider.
Cloudflare DNS, aka 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168, is new to the market and they are fast, much faster than Google DNS based on our test. Whoever used it before would know it. Cloudflare also committed that they will never sell your data to anyone. Your privacy is guaranteed with them.
The screenshot above is a chart made by Cloudflare to compare its DNS speed with Google DNS, Cisco OpenDNS and the general DNS providers.
How to Change DNS to Google or Cloudflare DNS on Windows 10 PC
So, here’s how to change DNS in Windows 10 without going to your modem or router settings.
- Go to Start menu.
- Type Control Panel and click on it.
- Go to View network status and tasks.
- In the left panel, click on Change adapter settings.
- Right click the network you are currently using, be it an Ethernet cable network or an Wi-Fi network, then click Properties.
- Select Internet Protocol Version 4, then click Properties.
- At the bottom part of the window, click on Use the following DNS server addresses.
- Replace or enter the following DNS addresses:
- For Google DNS, enter 22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199.
- For Cloudflare DNS, enter 188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206.
- Click OK, then OK again.
- Restart your computer.
- That’s it. You can now surf faster and more securely.
Doing the above will only change the DNS for that particular Windows 10 PC. If you have multiple computers in your home network, you will have to repeat the method above for each PC you want them to have their DNS changed.
For a computer at work in your office network, changing the DNS may cause connectivity issue and other problems. Consult your IT department before doing so.